05 April 2017

Yesterday, Tuesday 4th April, Lloyds Bank, Newham Council and Lendlease celebrated the first anniversary of their joint construction skills and education initiative, the Lloyds Bank Construction Skills Centre.

The pioneering project is delivered through Lendlease and the council’s successful job brokerage scheme Workplace. The Lloyds Bank Construction Skills Fund of £1m was awarded to Newham Council last year to deliver:

    • job brokerage support to help Newham residents into construction careers
    • training to help local residents develop entry-level construction skills
    • training for those in work to progress to higher level employment
    • educational events through working with schools, colleges and universities to promote jobs and apprenticeship opportunities within the construction industry

As part of today’s celebrations, seven Newham participants were recognised with special achievement awards presented by the Mayor of Newham, Sir Robin Wales.

After a successful first year of the initiative, the awards recognised those deemed to have made the most of the opportunity to be supported into secure and sustainable employment within the construction industry, either through being helped directly into employment, or after excelling in entry-level training. 

The seven award winners were:

    • Alfie Brown – a multi-skills course graduate who was helped into a job with Newham Council. He has since started a plumbing apprenticeship and received his award for his dedication to the programme and his successful career progression
    • Evan Collins – supported directly into a bricklaying apprenticeship with Concept Brickwork. Evan received his award for achieving and sustaining an apprenticeship in an area which is highly competitive and demanding
    • Maria Fitzgerald – after being out of work for two years due to care responsibilities, Maria has been supported with employability training to secure her Construction Skills Certification Scheme card. In January she started working as a Site Administrator at Brook Williams a multimillion pound company and has already progressed to Office Manager. She is currently in the process of being upskilled and will do her traffic marshal qualification. She received her award for her progress in the short space of time and overcoming her initial confidence barriers about returning to employment
    • Arthur George – helped directly into a general site labouring job with Southern Counties Roofing. Arthur was recognised for the praise he received from his employer for his hard work, resulting in him being kept on for phase two of the project. 
    • Balqisa Hussein –successfully completed the traffic marshall course funded by Lloyds Bank. She is now working as a traffic marshall on the Thames Tideway Tunnel project and is being upskilled for the CPCS plant training
    • Peak Diwantesa – a multi-skills course graduate who has been supported into employment as a general operative with Alumno Development in Stratford. Peak is now working with HC Construct on the Alumno development doing general labouring. He was recognised for his dedication to the multi-skills course, career progression and his hard working attitude
    • Afaque Haider Quereshi– a multi-skills course graduate who is now a HE Simm Plumbing Apprentice. After working at Lendlease on International Quarter London he was placed into work with HE Simm as a general operative. Afaque received positive feedback from his site managers and director who subsequently offered him a permanent contract as a plumbing apprentice. Afaque received his award for his hard work and dedication to his employment

Mayor of Newham, Sir Robin Wales

“I am delighted to be giving these awards to our Newham residents who have been supported into employment by our Workplace team as part of the Lloyds Bank Construction Skills Centre initiative. They are great ambassadors for Workplace showing that hard work and commitment can lead to good quality, sustainable employment in the construction industry.”

Edward Thurman, Managing Director, Head of Financial Institutions and Group Ambassador for London at Lloyds Banking Group 

“It is fantastic to visit the Lloyds Bank Construction Skills Centre at the International Quarter London. It has been a year since the Construction Skills Fund was launched with the award of £1million to Newham Council to support skills development and narrow the skills gap in the construction sector. This initiative is a great example of our commitment to helping Britain prosper by addressing the challenges of housing and employability and delivering more and better construction skills training in Newham.”

Award winner Alfie Brown 

“It is great to be supported by so many people and organisations to help me get into construction. I learned good basic construction techniques through the multi-skills course to help me get my first general operative job. My employers recognised that I am a good worker and have offered me a plumbing apprenticeship, so I am now attending college as well as working and really enjoying it and looking forward to a career in construction.”

Lloyds Bank, Newham Council and Lendlease are working in partnership on the construction skills initiative to address the current and future skills gap within the construction industry in London. The Lloyds Bank Construction Skills Fund of £1m was awarded to Newham Council in 2016 to deliver training, education and recruitment initiatives between 2016 and 2020. 

The Lloyds Bank Fund has resulted in the following in the first year:  85 new entrants to the industry placed into work; 16 apprentices; over 140 industry recognised qualifications delivered; almost 300 school children have been provided with an opportunity to explore careers in construction. Lloyds Bank launched the Fund as part of its commitment to helping Britain prosper through improving employability. It is also in response to housebuilders’ calls for more and better construction skills training - essential if the capital is to build the extra homes its residents urgently need.